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Dive Review of CNDive/Embun Luat in

March, 2012, an Instant Reader Report by Mr Brent Woods, ON, CA
Sr. Reviewer   (11 reports)
Report Number 6789
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
Ontario, Quebec, Cuba, Roatan, Red Sea, Little Cayman, St. Eustatius, Saba,
Bonaire, Jamaica, Pohnpei, Galapagos, Cost Rica,Pohnpei, Chuuk, Palau, Yap
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, dry  
Water Temp
75   to 81    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
30   to 100    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Depth, group was split by experience  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
> 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
5 stars  
Small Critters
  5 stars
Large Fish
4 stars  
Large Pelagics
  2 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
5 stars  
Boat Facilities
1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
4 stars  
Shore Facilities  
This is a basic boat.  There are no dedicated facilities for photographers
which was not a problem on my trip due to small number of passengers. 
Limited number of outlets that battery chargers can be plugged into.
Subject matter was fantastic.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
2 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
4 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
3 stars
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
5 stars    
4 stars   
5 stars    
I was in Indonesia as part of group that spent a week on the Pelagean and
10 days at Wakatobi.  I will not review them as there are already many
reviews for them.  Komodo was a personal side trip because I wanted to see
the dragons.
When I started looking into going to Komodo, I didn't know it was a dive
destination in its own right.  I decided that since I would have my dive
gear with me, I might as well dive rather than take one of the day trips
from Lubuan Bajo on the island of Flores.  I looked in the chapbook for
information on diving in Komodo and there was none so I researched the dive
operators listed in Lonely Planet.  I choose CNDive based on a review that
described how accommodating and trustworthy this operator is.  I found this
to be true.
I contacted CNDive and made a reservation for a three day cruise sometime
in the week I was to be in Flores.  No deposit, pay cash on arrival. 
Amazingly, my flight from Bali to Flores was on the same basis and both
worked out.  Indonesian domestic airlines do not have a great reputation. 
I asked for a recommendation from CNDive and used one of the airlines they
A word of caution about domestic flights within Indonesia.  Flight times
change frequently so check the day before and show up early for flights
leaving Bali.  There is nothing efficient about the domestic terminal in
Bali and it is the airport that changes the flight times not the airlines. 
I missed my return flight to Bali because my afternoon flight became an
early morning flight.  I was rebooked without any additional charges. 
Patience and a sense of adventure are essential for independant travel in
Back to the diving.  First the boat.  My liveaboard cost the equivalent of
$150/day.  National park fees extra.  The boat is basic, of traditional
design, has a cannon and in need of some tlc but seaworthy and mechanically
sound.  It would not be suitable for anyone with mobility problems.  
The stated capacity is 12 which would be crowded; the minimum is 4.  My
trip had three.  A group of 11 Indonesians cancelled on short notice and
were replaced by an recently certified Argentinean couple.  There were two
dive masters for us.  The dive sites chosen were suitable for all.  My
dives were longer and deeper.  I was able to talk them into a night dive
which is not normally offered and at no additional cost.
Food was plentiful and served buffet style.  The food is Indonesian and it
is not westernized. I have no idea what most of the dishes were but the
banana pancakes are memorable (drizzle condensed milk on them) and the
fruit fresh.  
I did nine dives and a dragon hike on Rinca Island over three days.  All
the dives were in Komodo National Park.  The park has been very effective
at protecting the marine environment as well as the islands the dragons
live on.  The coral is healthy with no signs of dynamite fishing.  The fish
population is also healthy with lots of large fish including sting rays and
mantas and a shark.
There was great diversity in the dive sites.  The check out dive with a bit
of imagination could be termed a muck dive.  There were a couple of dives
in the lee of Komodo's famed pinnacles, a manta dive, a drift dive and a
couple of shallow wall dives.
Over the three days here I saw nudibranchs (including two that were
tailing), sea snakes, sea stars, scorpion fish, large clams, turtles, clown
triggerfish, moorish idols, schools of large groupers and spadefish, large
jacks, lionfish, ghost pipefish, mating cuttlefish, triton triggerfish,
angelfish, mantas, whitetip reef shark, sting rays, hermit crabs, crabs,
blue spotted ray, eels, large octopus, sweetlips and many, many more that I
don't remember.
In conclusion, diving in Komodo is fantastic.  I thought it was better than
Wakatobi and the Pelagean because of the variety in the types of dive
sites, the top side scenery and an obviously healthy marine ecosystem.  I
would happily dive in Komodo again and with CNDive.  CNDive is not for you
if you want luxury or Western food.

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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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